Israel; Sahel; Myanmar; South Sudan

Israel: On Monday evening, the SG spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the phone to discuss the need for a resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. The SG stressed the urgency of reengagement towards sustainable peace between the two countries with solid international support.  Mr. Ban also emphasized the need for an urgent solution to the deteriorating health condition of the Palestinian hunger strikers in Israeli custody, which was followed by a statement released on Tuesday.

Sahel: WFP hosted a high-level event today in Rome on the situation in the Sahel. The event aimed to review achievements a year after the international community launched a major humanitarian response to the food crisis in the region. Although food security has improved since 2012, more than 10 million people in nine countries still do not have enough to eat, with one million children at risk of severe malnutrition. WFP Chief Ertharin Cousin emphasized that, in order to prevent recurring drought in the future, the key will be to boost food security and to build resilience.

Myanmar: UNICEF announced today that 24 children have been officially discharged from the Myanmar Armed Forces. The agency notes that such a move is aligned with the Government’s commitment to end the recruitment and use of children under the age of 18 in the armed forces.

South Sudan: SRSG for South Sudan, Hilde Johnson, today urged people living in the eastern state of Jonglei to break the cycle of violence. Such an announcement follows a “very serious” attack and cattle raid as UN and local officials prepare to distribute humanitarian aid to thousands of people affected by the fighting. UNMISS fears that such an attack could destabilize Jonglei further.